Top positive review
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IN THE WAR BETWEEN THE SEXES, THE BULLETS ARE FLYING!!
on 27 August 2001
I'm now starting to get into what I call "Splatter" novels (that's "horror" and "suspense" fiction with excessive violence and gore, not mention a strong sexual content). I've already purchased several books by Jack Ketchum, Edward Lee, and Simon Clark, to name a few. I've also quickly discovered that sometimes too much violence and sex disrupts the flow of the book, while at other times it seems to be just the right amount, moving the story along at a break-necking speed. Such is the case with Jack Ketchum's LADIES' NIGHT. This is a relatively short novel, running at a 167 pages. It's fast paced, tense, and definitely not for the squeamish. The story begins when a tanker truck is involved in a traffic accident in the middle of New York City's West Side. The unknown contents of the truck spills out into the streets, and its cloy, sweet cherry scent spreads throughout the inner city, infecting most of the female population. By nightfall, the women of NYC have become sexually aroused with a powerful blood lust that leads them to want to kill every man in the city. When Tom Braun and his wife notice a beautiful dancer masturbating herself with a broken wine bottle during a roof party at the top of their apartment building, it's the first sign that the night is going to get even stranger. After the party is over and the demented dancer has been subdued by security, Tom decides to visit the local bar for a nightcap. Within a couple of hours, the women in the bar are brutally murdering as many of the men as possible, while Tom and the bartender, Phil, fight their way outside to the street, stepping out of the frying pan and into the fire. The sounds of the night are filled with the screams of dying men and the demonic laughter of vengeful females. Tom realizes that the women in the city have gone totally crazy and that his young son, Andy, may be in danger back at the apartment. It's going to be a battle to the death as he and other men fight their way through the streets in an effort to save Andy...a boy who may already be dead at the hands of his mother. LADIES' NIGHT is one of those fun reads that reminded me of movies like Night of the Living Dead and Halloween. It's popcorn entertainment that thrills and makes you jump in all of the right places. Mr. Ketchum doesn't hold back on the blood and gore in his descriptions of men and women being killed in the streets of New York City; yet, rather than being a turnoff, it actually works for me. There is no in-depth character development here, but who cares? Most of the characters in this novel are going to be dead by the end of it. This is a short roller-coaster ride of death and destruction that's to be enjoyed for its pacing and intensity. I liked LADIES' NIGHT enough that I intend to purchase some of Jack Ketchum's other novels, THE LOST, HIDE & SEEK, OPEN SEASON, and THE GIRL NEXT DOOR. Naturally, this novel isn't for everyone. If you're not into "splatter" fiction, then save your money for something else. If, however, you want to read some dark, violent, sexually oriented fiction that can make you laugh at different times, then give this novel a shot!